Yesterday was an unusual and blessed day for me. I had an unexpected surge of emails arrive after I published the article “Cry Wolf”. This started a chain reaction of events that had an affect on me. I didn’t see it coming. It just happened. The power of encouragement cannot be understated. Please don’t ever forget how important just a couple kind words can be to someone. Please don’t ever forget that a beautiful tree can be the result of the smallest “mustard seed”.
Perhaps the circumstances that unfolded were not just a coincidence. I don’t know. I know what I think. You see, many of the readers of yesterday’s article thought I was discouraged. And in a sense perhaps I was. But the result was unbelievable. People showered me with the most beautiful words of encouragement I have ever heard. I cried. I’m still in tears. In fact, it is these tears that got me up at 3:30 AM to write this article. This article is not going to be one of my easier articles to write … but I feel strongly I would not be doing the work of the Lord if I didn’t do it.
Yet Man Perceiveth it Not
Lately I have been fascinated with hearing God’s voice. One of my favorite verses in the Bible about hearing God’s voice is Job 33:14-16. First let me show you the text in the KJV because to me, it sounds so poetic. Especially when you hear someone else recite it. It’s actually quite beautiful.
For God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not. 15 In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falleth upon men, in slumberings upon the bed; 16 Then he openeth the ears of men, and sealeth their instruction,
Job is arguably the KEY to understanding many mysteries associated with God. When you look again at these verses in the New King James you get a tidbit more from the meaning.
For God may speak in one way, or in another,
Yet man does not perceive it.
15 In a dream, in a vision of the night,
When deep sleep falls upon men,
While slumbering on their beds,
16 Then He opens the ears of men,
And seals their instruction.
Think about the first half of verse 14 for a moment. “God may speak in one way or another”. WOW. That is AWESOME! Did you know that I have lived nearly half a century and I had NO IDEA that God speaks to you in many different ways. Think about that. That’s HUGE.
I always thought that God spoke to you only through a spiritual “empathetic” connection that many of us would refer to as a supernatural “intuition”. But I am telling you here and now that this is NOT TRUE. I have been personally experiencing God talking to me in other ways.
And GET THIS! He confirmed this with me by putting me on the phone with someone who, out of the “clear blue sky” starts telling me a story about his son and how he was healed through instructions given to him by God in an UNBELIEVABLE way. (I spoke to him about giving his testimony to you through an article and it is forthcoming I assure you).
God speaks to you in amazing supernatural ways and you DO NOT PERCEIVE IT
One Thing Leads to Another
So this “chain reaction” of sociological events begins to unfold. First I am overwhelmed with emails of empathy and encouragement from people all over the place. People I had NO IDEA were even reading these articles. That BLEW my mind. I know at this stage we have about 170 people on our email list and I do my best to keep the volume and content to a useful minimum; but I keep getting amazing emails from people who claim they have been loyal readers for many many months. Wow. That is truly humbling. I never intended this to happen. God is awesome isnt’ He? I am so blessed by you all.
I pray, in the NAME OF JESUS, that I can give back just a tiny little bit to you.
Anyway I call a friend on the phone on my way to work. We are bouncing all these amazing extra-Biblical “cosmic” concepts off of one another. You know … the kinds of things like “What are we going to do once we get our assignments in the Heavens working for Jesus?” I mean – you DO realize that eternity is a very long time don’t you? Surely you dont’ think you are going to be “floating around on a cloud” playing a harp for all of eternity do you?
As we shared all these amazing ideas I started thinking about the rapture. And I started thinking about how bad I wanted to be able to come along when everyone else is “called up”. You see, I worry sometimes about not “making it”. Please be careful here because what I am going to share with you could mean A LOT.
After I hung up the phone, something really strange happened to me that I don’t consciously recall having happened before. I am not kidding here, this could be really big for all of us. A phrase settled on my heart. I am telling you that I did NOT just think this up. It somehow just “materialized” in my mind out of no where.
Thinking A Lot, Lines Upon Lines
If you haven’t figured it out by now, I dont’ take much for granted these days. And I am also the type of person to analyze things to death. In fact I used to employ forms of “escapism” in my “backslidden days” to avoid having to think-think-think-think-think things to death all the time. I don’t mean to think things to death. It just happens. I can be sitting in a room talking to someone about a chocolate chip cookie recipe while simultaneously analyzing four different rapture scenarios.
Yep … welcome to my world.
But God made it perfectly clear to me that I am NOT to escape from it. Never mind my escape methods were technically sinning. It was the fact that I was not only escaping the “thought streams”, but I was also inadvertently escaping my spiritual connection to God. Be careful what you justify to do in your “recreational time”. It might be sinning and it might get you into trouble – more on that later… just something to “think” about (pun-intended).
Anyway so what are some of the things I think about? Well consider this. Have you considered how fortunate we all are to be able to interactively discuss Jesus and Heaven through this “technology”? Remember before the Internet you only had church. So your only option was to join a church Bible study group (if there was one). OR you had to take whatever you were tossed by the Pastor that Sunday (or “what-ever-day”) and accept it as your motivational “tidbit” of the week?
This is why I will never shut down the interactive email communication from the readers of this web site. I am constantly blessed by your ideas, questions and sometimes amazing answers. I dont’ know what I would do without you. I mean it.
Honest Sharing of Ideas
One of the things that has been driving me crazy in my “though streams” is this concept of the rapture and what qualifies someone to be “The Bride” of Jesus Christ. You see I have this fear. It is NOT just a fear for ME but it is a fear for all of mankind. I fear that the church may have failed to pass along some really important concepts to people over the years. I fear these concepts are SO IMPORTANT that by virtue of not knowing them you could find yourself cheated out of some awesome events in your future with your KING JESUS.
But FIRST know this. I could be wrong. Many will believe that I am wrong. And that’s okay. The last thing I want to do is tell you something that is incorrect. BUT!! It would be reprehensible for me to suspect that I MIGHT have been given a “Word” from God that could change your ETERNITY and NOT share it with you because I was afraid it might offend you. THINK ABOUT THAT.
How many church pastors would NOT tell someone something they strongly felt because it might “offend” their congregation and affect their ability to pay their bills? I’m not picking on church pastors in general. I wish I was worthy in God’s eyes to be one some day. But the concept of “conflict of interest” is a big issue here. My only interest is to share with YOU as a friend in Jesus, what I believe God MIGHT have shared with me. I want you to be blessed and get the most out of your eternity and future with our Lord more than anything.
I have no ulterior motives.
What Does it Mean to Be READY?
One of the concepts that has been bugging me for YEARS is this “Bride” thing. Yes I have heard the parable of the Ten Virgins a BUNCH of times. Amen to that! And yes I have been strong armed into a corner and told “No Johnny that’s not what it means… it means THIS ….” (etc.) We’ve all been there haven’t we? We’ve all been to a family get-together or some other event where we discussed such matters and someone in the group was SURE they had it all figured out and “set everyone straight” … right?
Did you know that one of God’s constellations in the “Mazzaroth” (that’s God’s name for the Zodiac which HE created by the way) actually shows JESUS carrying His “Bride” away from the WRATH??
Do you want to be THAT BRIDE? I do. I am going to tell you hear and now that I want to be THAT BRIDE more than anything in the world. (sorry tears … give me a second). Can you imagine that feeling? The feeling of anticipation? The feeling of knowing that your King is coming to carry you away to the most wonderful eternity you could ever believe? To a magical heavenly cosmic assignment of wonder beyond your wildest dreams?
That’s a pretty important event, wouldn’t you agree?
So let me ask you some questions. Here is the scenario.
You are an angel on assignment. God has asked you to go down to earth. He sends you to a nice spirit filled church in any-town USA. But God tells you to make sure you do a good job! God tells you that your assignment is to “pick out people who are READY to be THE BRIDE of Jesus!”
THINK ABOUT THAT
You have been asked by GOD to pick out people who are READY to be the BRIDE OF JESUS – HIS SON!
What criteria do you use?
Does everyone get to be The Bride?
THE GROOM is the “SON OF GOD”
Only The Bride Get’s Raptured?
This is not a popular concept I admit but one of the things that has bothered the heck out of me is this concept of the Bride and the rapture etc. Think about this. The “Mazzaroth” is God’s handwriting in the heavens. There is a book entitled “The Real Meaning of the Zodiac” written by Kennedy. Again, God’s handwriting in the stars of the heavens shows Jesus carrying away his Bride to protect her from the forthcoming wrath. That concept alone should SPEAK VOLUMES to you. Never mind what “Aunt Sally” said the parable of the Ten Virgins means.
THIS IS YOUR ETERNITY
THIS IS OTHER PEOPLE’S ETERNITIES
Is it even remotely possible that “The Bride” is a special group of people? Many simplify the matter and say “well the Bride is the church”. Are you SERIOUS? There are SEVEN Churches receiving report cards in Revelation and I dont’ get the impression they all got passing grades, do you?
And what about Larry. Larry sits in the church. But Larry doesn’t love Jesus. Not really. He says he does, but he is having an affair on his wife with the baby sitter, and cussing like a sailor at the bar with his friends every other night. His wife is crying alone in her bed every night.
Does Larry get to go?
What happens if Larry is “fornicating” with his 15 year old baby sitter when “THE RAPTURE” occurs?
What happens if Larry is “drunk off his butt” when “THE RAPTURE” occurs?
Some Questions are Not Easy to Consider
When those words fell upon my heart yesterday out of the “clear blue sky” I honestly didn’t know where they came from. Nobody wants to be “left behind” … right? I sure don’t. But on the other hand isn’t it a horrible injustice to simply tell everyone that YOU’RE ALL COMING because you are SAVED!!
Is that true? Can it be true? Ask yourself that HARD question for one moment.
What if ONLY THE BRIDE get’s RAPTURED?
What if THOSE WORDS, “The Bride is a State of Readiness” were in FACT from God and not just my imagination? Would I not have a duty to give you that message? Don’t you want to bring everyone along with you that you can? Could you live with yourself if you let someone stay behind because you ASSUMED it was okay for them to “be bad” sometimes because they were “saved” and went to your church?
WOW. Not good.
Assuming the word I received yesterday was not just some “thought stream” driven worldly coincidence and it was intended to be a message for me to share, what then qualifies a person as “being ready” to be a Bride and what “scripture” backs up this notion?
Okay you want “supernatural” confirmation do you? All right then here goes.
So yesterday I get this word and I fire off a number of emails to people making sure the “concept” was not completely ridiculous and I lost my mind or something. I was shocked at the responses I got from people. While there was some resistance, the feedback was overwhelmingly in line with what I believed was true.
But I decided I needed to let this one “stew in the pot” a little bit.
Later in the day I just couldn’t get this concept off of my mind. It was like some type of obsession. So I did some Internet searching on the concept. In doing so I stumbled across the same old “apologetics” you get from your church. But what I did find (that was most interesting) was ….
6 And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, as the sound of many waters and as the sound of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigns! 7 Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready. ”
Now in the NAME OF JESUS please believe me. I had NO IDEA that word existed in these verses. In fact I didn’t even know where in the Bible the “marriage supper” was mentioned. I stumbled across these verses more than half a day later while I was at work.
If that isn’t a JOB 33:13-16 “God speaks once, yea twice” confirmation …. I dont’ know what is!
What Does Being Ready Mean?
Being “ready” has a lot of possibilities. This makes it a bit tricky and suggests that you probably dont’ want to take any chances …. right? My recommendations in this regard are unqualified and only coming to you as a friend in Jesus.
First remember that God looks into your heart. This is imperative. So please take the time to do a google search on the words “God looks into your heart” and read the resulting scriptures and articles. You need to understand that what is “in your heart” is important.
Also remember Hebrews 8:7-13 and
YOU ARE NOT UNDER THE LAW!!!
For if that first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second. 8 Because finding fault with them, He says: “Behold, the days are coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah
DO NOT write me emails trying to save my soul because I dared to tell people they are not under the law. However if you would like me to refer you to fabulous teachings that will set you free from “the law” then email me at email@example.com and I will pass along some great stuff.
Here are some points you may want to consider for “BEING READY” as THE BRIDE …
GET SIN OUT OF YOUR LIFE – Do the best you can to live your life sin free. God speaks to you in many ways and you know in your heart what sin is … so do something about it. Yes we are saved by grace and the atonement of Jesus but this does not mean you can keep on sinning. You have to “try” to do your best. This means you must try. God looks into your heart. Repentance doesn’t mean anything to God if you DON’T TRY!! Ask for forgiveness all the time and MEAN IT.
KEEP THE SPIRITUAL CONNECTION LIVE – Do your best to keep on talking to Jesus spiritually. Don’t take the relationship “thing” lightly. Let me give you an example. If you drink, keep it light. Don’t get drunk. It has been impressed upon my heart that it is POSSIBLE you can lose your spiritual communication lines with God when you get drunk. Think about it. Why would the scripture warn you over and over again about “being drunk” while basically telling you it’s okay to drink? There are two possible answers and both of them are connected. One – you are far more likely to sin and sinning starts in YOUR MIND and Two – you will loose your SPIRITUAL connection to God.
Do not fall asleep drunk and “miss the boat” because the Angel couldn’t wake you up!!
PRAISE AND PRAY CONSTANTLY – Be in a constant state of praise and prayer constantly. Make sure you HEAR your Lord speaking to you. Make sure you are “one of the sheep” that “hears His voice”. Start learning to “hear God’s voice” NOW. Don’t wait. Praise Jesus all day long. Pray constantly. You don’t have to shout “PRAISE JESUS” in the staff meeting at work, but you should be thinking it constantly. Always remember Job. No matter how hard life treats you, PLEASE PLEASE don’t lose sight of the PRIZE! Always PRAISE GOD. Always talk to your best friend Jesus.
Think about this. If you are talking to Jesus and praising Jesus at the exact time the RAPTURE happens, what are the odds that YOU won’t get to come along??
THE BAPTISM OF THE HOLY SPIRIT – Do not take this lightly. This is not water sprinkling this is the Acts 2:2 Baptism of Fire / Baptism of the Holy Ghost. Read my article entitled “The Baptism of the Holy Spirit” and seek it with all your heart. Tell God that you WANT the Baptism of the Holy Spirit more than anything. MEAN IT. Pray about it. SEEK AND YOU SHALL RECEIVE!!
READ THE ENTIRE BIBLE – Do NOT get caught having not read the entire Bible before that Angel has to pick you out of the crowd! Think about it. If you were that Angel, would you choose someone to be the BRIDE OF JESUS when that person didn’t even take the time to READ THE ENTIRE BIBLE?? The Holy Word of your Heavenly Father? Woah!
Get yourself an audio Bible and start listening every night. There are free ones on the Internet. Read and listen.
JUST DO IT!
I am right behind you. There are some books I have not even finished entirely myself (GULP!)
Summary in Jesus Name
What if the Assistant Pastor of the church gets raptured, but the Senior Pastor doesn’t because he is having an affair? What if Sally get’s raptured, but her best friend doesn’t because she was drunk from the party the night before and didn’t hear the Angel calling her name?
These are some serious concepts you need to think about.
Look. I am NOT pretending to have some amazing secret the Lord gave me. I did not get visited by some Angel last night. I am not even 100% sure that God gave me this information although it sure does seem that way. I’m just sharing with you these ideas because I REALLY DO CARE. Every person that reads these articles is a wonderful Jesus filled spirit to me. Every email I have received from each of you is a wonderful blessing to me.
I want you ALL TO BE THERE.
I pray in the NAME OF JESUS I am there too.
SOME THINGS ARE WORTH MAKING AN EFFORT
…. And most of all